Pennsylvania Governor Announces Coverage for COVID-19 Testing for Medicaid and CHIP Beneficiaries

March 2020 ~

On March 11, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf announced that the state’s Medicaid Assistance program and Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) will now cover testing and treatment for COVID-19.

According to the announcement, the state’s Medicaid and CHIP programs, WellSpan Health, and UPMC Health Plan, will pay for COVID-19 testing when determined necessary by a health care practitioner. Additionally, the state says it will also ease some prior authorization requirements “to facilitate access to necessary testing and treatment”. For services that do have copayments, Medicaid Assistance providers may not deny services if a beneficiary is unable to pay the copayment.

“We are prepared to mitigate COVID-19 throughout the commonwealth, and part of this mitigation includes ensuring that anyone who needs to be tested for COVID-19 can access the test,” said Governor Tom Wolf. “No Pennsylvanian should forego testing for any reason, if deemed medically necessary, including fear of what it might cost.”

“We are pleased to make this announcement today and thankful to our partners at the Centers for Medicare for Medicaid Services and our managed care organizations for working with us to ensure that anybody who needs to be tested for COVID-19 will have no barriers to the test,” said DHS Secretary Teresa Miller.

For more information regarding medical assistance coverage and COVID-19, providers and patients can consult the Medicaid FAQ and CHIP FAQ.

For more information about available resources and coverage and testing through commercial health insurers, refer to the Insurance Coverage and Coronavirus (COVID-19) Frequently Asked Questions from the Pennsylvania Insurance Department.

Source(s): Pennsylvania Office of the Governor Press Release; Lancaster Online; The Daily Collegian;